Georgia Gardener Newsletter Design Tip: March 23, 2006

Shade Combination

Shade Combination: Hostas, Ferns and Golden Japanese Forest Grass:

1. Hosta: any medium blue variety (such as 'Halcyon')
2. Christmas Fern (Polystichum acrostichoides) or Sword Fern (P. munitum)
3. Japanese Painted Fern (Athyrium niponicum 'Pictum')
4. Golden Japanese Forest Grass (Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola')

Shade gardening can be tricky especially when dealing with dense shade, but it can also be the most rewarding. How many gardeners do you see in their full sun gardens on a July afternoon?

Often the best way to deal with shade is to work with subtle colors and varying textures. These blue and gold colors complement each other while the coarse texture of the hosta is offset by the fine texture of the ferns and forest grass. This is a lovely combination that is best planted in partial to full shade in highly organic, moist, but well-drained soil.

Since all of the plants are perennials, the combination will return year after year.

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